Woman Who Lost Mother Speaks Out About Domestic Violence
by Kelsey Watts, KHQ Local News Anchor/Reporter - bio | email
SPOKANE, Wash – A Spokane woman was shot in the face Monday, allegedly by her boyfriend. While she is expected to survive, it's a story that hits too close to home for Sarah Muter of Euphrates, Washington.
Muter knows the shooting victim, and was shocked to hear she'd been shot. Especially since her own mother was shot in the face allegedly by her husband nearly one year ago.
"I love her, and I really wish she was still here," Muter told KHQ. "There's not a day that goes by that it doesn't kill me, thinking about what he did."
Muter's mother, Bobbie Thompson, had lived in Spokane for about 10 years, before moving out east with her new husband, James (Jim) Thompson.
"She loved Jim more than anyone I ever knew," Muter recalled.
She says there was never any sign of physical abuse in the relationship. But toward the end, the couple was fighting over the health care needs of a live-in relative. Mutzer says they were drinking on the night of October 21, 2011. Her mother died of a gunshot to the face, and when police arrived they found Jim Thompson huddled over her. He was arrested for her murder, and remains in jail to this day without bond, awaiting trial.
"My mom didn't make it more than 5 minutes after the shot," Mutzer said.
With the one-year anniversary of her mother's passing coming up, Mutzer's mind was already on domestic violence.
Then, Tuesday morning, she learned about her friend in Spokane also being shot in the face.
"Just seeing that another person that I know has basically sustained the same wounds, it just brought all of these things back," Mutzer said. "I know she's okay, and she's going to pull through. I'm just so glad she's okay."
Her message is for all women: if you're in an abusive relationship, get out. There are crisis lines, shelters and resources available.
"Abuse comes in so many forms, it's not just physical abuse, and so many people make the mistake of thinking that it has to be physical for it to be abuse, but my mom – there was no history of physical abuse there, and look what happened to her," she said.
And Sarah Mutzer says, if you think something bad can't happen to you, you're wrong.
"People don't understand that it's an every day basis, and there's hundreds of thousands of women who never come forward with it," she added. "My mom was one of the unlucky ones who lost their life because of that situation, and I think more women need to be aware that it can happen to anybody."
Her mom is now with her every day – in spirit, and also in a tattoo prominently on Mutzer's arm. But she would give anything to have her back.
"I know there's a higher power he has to answer to eventually," she said. "And whether that's man's law or God's law, I know he'll get what he deserves, no matter what."
Jim Thompson has entered a not guilty plea, and is awaiting trial for the murder of Bobbi Thompson.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. If you or someone you know needs help, CLICK HERE or HERE.
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